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Some people maintain the mindset that homeschoolers are an enigma, wearing suede jumpers, geeking out over science projects, and getting their kicks on singing Kumbayaa around the family fireplace at night.
I guess maybe this could be said of a few, but my kids aren’t among them (and neither am I).
No, I don’t wear suede jumpers and my kids don’t talk through their noses like Steve Urkel or read encyclopedias for fun. We do, however, think “outside the box”, which is a delightfully surprising byproduct of a homeschool environment.
(You will forgive us our regular pajama uniform. It’s comfie, it’s convenient, and it’s less laundry. We think better in our “Hello Kitty’s”!)
My girls enjoy making friends of all ages, genders, and school affiliations.
Last week, my youngest (Kylie), returned home from youth group with a funny story about a guy who showed up and didn’t know anyone. She sat beside him and held a delightful conversation about his school, friends, and girlfriend.
She and her sister came home and piled on my bed so we could catch up (I love the fact that we’re close like that – another perk of homeschooling). “I made a new best friend tonight!” she said. Of course, she was kidding, but it was fun to hear her story.
She also has a passion for Amish fiction. At fifteen years of age, that may seem a bit odd-she doesn’t care. I love that! Every time I turn around the kid is reading a new Amish book. Beverly Lewis, Wanda E. Brunstetter, and Mindy Starns Clark are some of her favorite authors. She’s fascinated by their way of life. She wants to visit the Pennsylvania Dutch or go to the Dover, Ohio area and see these folks in action. We want to make that happen at some point this year.
This morning she wanted to make baked oatmeal (both the girls are quite handy in the kitchen – we did a home ec co-op a couple years ago). Reading a written recipe from my collection she gasped, “Hey, wait! This says it’s an AMISH recipe!” Of course, in her eyes, that made it even better. My parents had visited Amish country, staying in a Bed and Breakfast, where mom secured the recipe and passed it on to me.
I should say, since I mentioned Hayley’s absentmindedness yesterday, that she is really very bright and artistic. “Mom, I liked your blog, even though it did make me sound like I was kind of an idiot.” She spends a great deal of time painting on canvas-a few of her works hang in various rooms of our home. She teaches a few young violin students (having taken lessons since the age of five). She also makes great grades. There, Hayley-I hope I have done you justice. I can say more later, if necessary.
Mostly, we power through the school day and laugh a lot (all it takes is one funny look for the three of us to collapse in a fit of giggles). High School is hard, and this is Hayley’s senior year. Covering all the bases is important!
But, for some reason, God called me to this-a passion grown out of a notion (“Could I really do that?”), and a need to remove my family from the rat race. And since He has called, I know He will enable.
Of course, if God called me to homeschool, He surely wouldn’t ask me to wear a suede jumper, right?!
I hope if you homeschool, you find the experience delightfully refreshing, as have I. And if you don’t homeschool, I hope that you won’t fashion pre-conceived notions (such as suede jumpers and other nonsense) onto your friends who do.
I think we can support each other and benefit from a broader perspective within the realm of education. Homeschool parents, let’s not just our fellow public school/Christian school/private school parents. And vice versa.
In my humble opinion, each family must make their own decision as to which mode of learning fits best.
What’s your opinion on homeschooling?
Are you interested in homeschooling your preschooler, but you’re not sure where to start?
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My brother and I read encyclopedias for fun before and after we were homeschooled. ;)I still occasionally pick one up for just to read through…yeah, I know weird, but we came from a family of avid readers. Mys husband is, too, and it is funny to see my 5 year old son starting to really enjoy it! I do NOT wear jumpers, though!!! (neither did my Mom)
I think that's great! You had the freedom to do that and the interest to grow on your own. That's what homeschooling provides – avenues for kids to explore areas of interest and to learn without even realizing it! Each family has a different "flavor". I love it!